Giants’ Xavier McKinney opens up on nearly losing three fingers
There was more fear than blood for Xavier McKinney when his life changed in the blink of an eye.
No one has a greater appreciation for what the Giants’ divisional-round playoff against the Eagles on Saturday night means than McKinney.
He is the Giant who can still dream of football heaven after having survived a personal hell.
His recent Instagram post displaying a photo of X-rays of his broken fingers on his left hand, suffered following a freak Can-Am ATV accident in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, during the Giants’ early-November bye week, would have said it all if McKinney didn’t feel compelled to say more on Wednesday.
I asked McKinney, standing alone in the Giants’ field house, why he posted the chilling X-ray.
“First of all, to show how bad the injury was,” McKinney said. “I don’t think people understood the magnitude of what it was. They didn’t really understand how broken that it really was.
“I think a lot of people didn’t understand that I coulda really lost three fingers.
“I was almost close to losing three of my fingers.”
That is what the doctors at the Hospital For Special Surgery told him post-surgery.
“When we were doing surgery, actually the doc told me afterwards, he was like he wasn’t sure how he was even gonna be able to get all the pieces back together ’cause there was so many,” McKinney said
“My fingers were shattered.”
He returned wearing a cast for the Jan. 1 win over the Colts that clinched the playoff berth. He had lost seven games of his third season. The fact that he knows he could have lost so much more, he said, has changed him.
“That’s why I say the time is so valuable, everything is precious,” McKinney said. “I try to take nothing for granted.
“It was a life-changing experience for me.
“It was traumatizing for me. I never saw anything like that with my own eyes. It was different. It made me change my perspective on a lot of things.”
His first call was to his agent at the time. Then he called Giants general manager Joe Schoen, head coach Brian Daboll, Ronnie Barnes, the VP of medical services, and Dr. Robert Hotchkiss, orthopedic surgeon at HSS.
“All of ’em were painful [calls to make], I’m gonna be honest,” McKinney said.
“It was a lot going through my mind. I was still trying to figure out, ‘OK, how I was gonna get back here to have my surgery?’ ”
It was only McKinney’s second time out of the country.
“It was super frightening,” McKinney said.
An ambulance took him to a local hospital.
“It wasn’t any bones sticking out. It wasn’t a whole bunch of blood. It was enough though,” McKinney said. “They washed my hand basically to clean all the blood whatever. And then they had to numb my hand, and then they had to pull my fingers to put it in the splint. My fingers were like pushed in, they were like caved in, they had to pull ’em, put it in the splint.”
He stayed the night at the resort he was staying at and flew back the next morning to New Jersey.
“I had surgery that next day,” McKinney said.
McKinney said the person with him during the accident was not hurt.
“You see guys on ATVs and doing all type of s–t every day during the season and whenever,” McKinney said. “The way I saw it was how I already explained it was just to not take anything for granted, not take life for granted. Obviously things happen, but you gotta be able to push through and figure out ways to move past it and get better from there.”
Giants defensive coordinator Wink Martindale recalls McKinney’s state of mind when they spoke.
“He was just distraught,” Martindale said. “Embarrassed. That he was sorry that it happened.”
McKinney’s apology was accepted by all. He is one of 10 Giants captains and one of their most vocal leaders. He is a budding star who ended the wild-card game by stopping T.J. Hockenson short of a first down.
“I just try to tap into a different mindset,” McKinney said. “I think this year has been different too because I missed games, and I missed games previously [broken foot] my rookie year. Obviously I knew before games were super valuable, each game was valuable, and each game meant a lot. But after that injury, after sitting all that time, I had to really sit back and really think just hard about everything. … I want to keep going. I want to reach the end goal.
“I tell myself in my mind, ‘I’m not tired.’ I give every play 110 percent effort every time. … I gotta push myself a little more, because the stakes are higher now that we’re in the playoffs. I know my teammates need me that much more. I know the defense needs me that much more … when we’re not on the field, in the locker room, wherever it is, to make sure the energy level is through the roof, that’s what I’m trying to do.”
McKinney knows how close he came to not being able to do anything. To not being able to help the Giants chase a Super Bowl.
Denial of responsibility! Today Breeze.in is an automatic aggregator around the global media. All the content are available free on Internet. We have just arranged it in one platform for educational purpose only. In each content, the hyperlink to the primary source is specified. All trademarks belong to their rightful owners, all materials to their authors. If you are the owner of the content and do not want us to publish your materials on our website, please contact us by email – firstname.lastname@example.org. The content will be deleted within 24 hours.